Public betting is the trend of the majority of bettors on a particular bet. If it’s a Moneyline bet on the Dallas Cowboys playing against the Denver Broncos, and the majority bet on Dallas, that’s the public betting.
But what causes the public to bet a certain way? One thing you can be sure of, most people are predictable. You can count on the public to:
- Be heavily influenced by the media
- To overvalue favorites
- Usually, bet the over
If the sports experts on the radio or TV channels give their opinion about an upcoming game, you can be sure they will heavily sway most listeners in that direction. If the media is all saying the same thing, the public betting will be heavily skewed to one side.
People tend to think the favorite team will win and bet on them most of the time. This is fine (from the bettor’s perspective) if they make a Moneyline wager. But if they bet against the spread (ATS), they aren’t betting on which team will win, but which team will cover. Even so, most recreational bettors will lean towards the favorite instead of the underdog.
Bet the Over
For some reason, players tend to bet the over. It’s assumed it’s because they like high-scoring games.
Other key influences on the public include:
- Popular teams. The public will heavily favor the most popular NFL teams to win no matter what else is going on.
- Key player injuries. The betting public will generally bet against that team.
- Winning streak or losing streak.
- Mismatch in the teams. If the public thinks there is a big difference between teams.
- Strong offense going against a weak defense.
The good thing is that the line makers have already considered this information. Your lines are already set with these biases in mind before betting starts.
Fading the Public
This is another word for betting contrarian. It means a bettor is going against the public consensus. These guys will bet against the general public’s bias automatically. Why? Well, the biggest reason is that most bettors lose. If you go against everything they do, you should be able to win more often. Right?
The most experienced contrarians will wait till close to game time in hopes that you’ll keep moving the lines in their favor. So be ready for sudden amounts of money coming in after moving a line. It could be from those players wanting to fade the public.
Having a balance of contrarians and public bettors could reduce the risk on your sportsbook.
Putting it all Together
So what do we do with all this information? For the most part, it’s simply good to understand how the general public or the recreational bettor places their bets. Having an idea of the trend in betting on NFL games is always good. If you understand what’s happening, you can respond accordingly, and you won’t be scratching your head wondering what’s going on.
Recreational Bettors vs. Sharps
Sharps tend to make more money than they lose, so you want to know when they are betting on your sportsbook. If the funds on either side of each bet are pretty even, you don’t have to worry whether there are sharp players in there. You’re not taking any risks. But if you haven’t been able to balance both sides, knowing if there’s sharp money on one side might help you decide on the next steps.
How do you tell whether sharp players are betting? Recreational players usually bet small amounts – usually up to $100 on a game. Sharp players may bet in the thousands. You can move your lines if you see one or several large bets on one side. If you have time, you’ll be able to get the same amount of money on the other side.
If you don’t have time, you can use a layoff account to take the risk out of the bet. Better yet, add limits to your players’ bets so you don’t have to worry about sharp action. Also, add alerts to notify you whenever someone makes a bet. Stop the problems before they happen. You may not be taking in as much money, but you’re also reducing the number of headaches and worry over the risks.
Knowing what can cause the trends of the betting public and using the features of your betting program helps you manage your business better. BossAction’s pay per head software has all the tools you need to manage your players, whether they are recreational or sharp.
You can add limits to any of your players, get alerts whenever a bet is made, and have access to a layoff account when all else fails. We take out as much risk as we can so your business can continue to grow and make you more money.
Join BossAction now and receive two weeks free to try out all our features, including ClubPoker, where all the risk is gone. You receive the rake on every hand no matter who wins.
Call 1-800-339-4108 to book your free consultation and get your first two weeks free.